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Worker Activity Recognition in Manufacturing Line Using Near-body Electric Field

Sungho Suh; Vitor Fortes Rey; Sizhen Bian; Yu-Chi Huang; Jo¸e M. Ro¸anec; Hooman Tavakoli Ghinani; Bo Zhou; Paul Lukowicz
In: IEEE Internet of Things Journal (IoT), Vol. 1, Page 1, IEEE, 11/2023.


Manufacturing industries strive to improve production efficiency and product quality by deploying advanced sensing and control systems. Wearable sensors are emerging as a promising solution for achieving this goal, as they can provide continuous and unobtrusive monitoring of workers' activities in the manufacturing line. This paper presents a novel wearable sensing prototype that combines IMU and body capacitance sensing modules to recognize worker activities in the manufacturing line. To handle these multimodal sensor data, we propose and compare early, and late sensor data fusion approaches for multi-channel time-series convolutional neural networks and deep convolutional LSTM. We evaluate the proposed hardware and neural network model by collecting and annotating sensor data using the proposed sensing prototype and Apple Watches in the testbed of the manufacturing line. Experimental results demonstrate that our proposed methods achieve superior performance compared to the baseline methods, indicating the potential of the proposed approach for real-world applications in manufacturing industries. Furthermore, the proposed sensing prototype with a body capacitive sensor and feature fusion method improves by 6.35%, yielding a 9.38% higher macro F1 score than the proposed sensing prototype without a body capacitive sensor and Apple Watch data, respectively.


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